September 24, 2019
Boris Johnson looks set for a rough ride when parliament returns on Wednesday following the Supreme Court’s bombshell ruling that his attempt to suspend it was unlawful and void.
Here’s What Boris Johnson Can Expect In The Wake Of The Supreme Court Ruling
Intense discussions are ongoing among MPs about how to use the extra time and nothing is settled yet.
But there is talk in Westminster of everything from forcing a Brexit delay to holding Johnson in contempt of parliament.
The PM is flying back from the United Nations General Assembly conference in New York early so he can face the music.
So what could we see in the days and weeks ahead?Changes to Brexit or a general election?In a way, nothing much has changed on the Brexit front.
Opposition parties like the Liberal Democrats and Plaid Cymru are reluctant to back a vote of no confidence in Johnson’s government, which would trigger a general election or a 14 day period for someone else to take over as PM if they can comment a majority in the Commons.
That’s because they want parliament to be sitting towards the end of October to ensure that Johnson asks the EU for a Brexit delay and he cannot swerve the Benn act to block a no-deal Brexit on Halloween.
The legislation compels the PM to ask the EU for a delay if he cannot get MPs to agree a Brexit withdrawal agreement by October 19 and the opposition want to hold him to it.
A vote of no confidence becomes even less likely because Tory Brexit rebels and the Lib Dems are unwilling to back Jeremy Corbyn to take over as interim PM without an election. The Labour leader is similarly unwilling to step aside for a unity candidate like Conservative Ken Clarke.One idea under serious discussion is speeding up the process of forcing a Brexit delay, in order to it secured by the early weeks of October, allowing a general election to be held without the threat of no deal hanging over it
The Lib Dems are understood to be pushing for this, while other sources suggested one option could involve MPs taking over Commons business again to amend the Benn Act to speed up the timeline.
However, more than a dozen of the rebel alliance’s Tory members may not back this as they want to leave the EU with a deal. 
Another plan under discussion is amending the Benn bill to close any potential loopholes Johnson might try and exploit to force through no-deal on October 31, which could pave the way for an election after the Brexit deadline.Supreme Court falloutThe judges’ constitutionally enormous decision will live long in the memory and the fallout is likely to reach the floor of the Commons in the days ahead as MPs seek to punish the PM.
Opposition sources are discussing whether to bring forward a motion to find Johnson in contempt of parliament. 
Other avenues under consideration include using arcane parliamentary procedure to force Attorney General Geoffrey Cox and Number 10’s director of legislative affairs, Nikki Da Costa, to publish their advice on the suspension, known as prorogation. 
A leak to Sky News suggests Cox told the PM the prorogation plan was lawful.
Longer shots include impeaching Johnson, as proposed by Plaid Cymru, or even banning him from the Commons, although MPs are likely to want to question him as much as possible.EXC - Leaked documents reveal Attorney General Geoffrey Cox’s advice to cabinet that prorogation was “lawful and within the constitution” and that anyone who disputed this was doing so for “political consideration”This document was released by court but this section redacted pic.twitter.com/mytnDfm22j— Sam Coates Sky (@SamCoatesSky) September 24, 2019Day one Wednesday is likely to bring a flurry of urgent questions to force ministers to the Commons, to answer MPs’ questions on the court ruling, and Johnson’s efforts to get a Brexit deal. 
The PM himself could even choose to avoid the embarrassment of either being forced to the Commons or sending a junior in his stead by giving his own statement.
And there could also be urgent questions on the collapse of Thomas Cook or the febrile situation in the Middle East.Sources also expect the main business to be some form of an emergency debate on Brexit and the suspension of parliament, although its exact form is yet to be decided.
Prime minister’s questions will not go ahead this week, Commons Speaker John Bercow has announced.
But Sarah Wollaston, chair of the powerful liaison committee, is demanding that Johnson appear before the group within a week, having avoided a previously scheduled grilling by suspending parliament earlier this month.Tory conferenceThis being 2019, there is still likely to be a crunch vote this week – on whether to hold a brief parliamentary break from Monday to Wednesday to allow the Conservative conference to go ahead unimpeded.
Opposition parties are making clear they will oppose a recess motion, with Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer asking, “why on Earth would we [back it]?” at a Labour conference fringe event.
So Johnson will be relying on votes from the Brexit rebels he sacked from his party, some of who are attending the conference as Tory members, if he wants to get it through. 
Either way, Tory Chairman James Cleverly has insisted that “of course” the Manchester conference will go ahead.
But it could end up a damp squib if MPs have to race back to Westminster for crunch votes next week.Lib Dems used their conference to say they would revoke article 50Lab used theirs to decide not to decide their view on BrexitWe’ll use ours to set out our positive vision for the country outside the EUOf course #CPC19 is going ahead - look forward to seeing you all in MCR— James Cleverly MP (@JamesCleverly) September 24, 2019Related... Parliament Must Oust Boris Johnson As PM Now, Says Labour MP Paul Williams John Bercow Announces Parliament Will Return On Wednesday Morning Supreme Court Rules Boris Johnson’s Suspension Of Parliament Was Unlawful Make sense of politics. Sign up to the Waugh Zone and get the political day in a nutshell.
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